The following letter appeared in the Connecticut Post on February 6, 2014:
Mayor Bill Finch's
innovative green strategies are paying off for the city of Bridgeport,
and consequently for the region as a whole. His BGreen2020
sustainability plan is a model for what towns and cities across the
region and the country should be doing to fight climate change, grow
jobs, attract forward-thinking businesses and create savings for
The Eco-Technology Park is breathing new life into the former
manufacturing-heavy sections of Bridgeport's South End and West End
neighborhoods with new progressive businesses that transform waste into
viable resources. These are jobs that can't be exported out of town, out
of state and across borders, like so many of the jobs from Bridgeport's
booming manufacturing past. These jobs are going to the people of
Bridgeport, putting money in the pockets of consumers, which helps
improve the quality of life, economy and public safety of Bridgeport and
the entire region.
Finch's Green Energy Park plan, which aims to place renewable energy
sources such as solar and fuel cells on the former municipal landfill
site, is one we all support.
Covering up the sins of poor environmental stewardship of the past
with five megawatts of clean renewable energy -- 2.86 megawatts of solar
photo voltaic and 2.8 megawatts of fuel cell energy -- very clearly
demonstrates the great steps forward that Bridgeport is taking to
position the city as a leader of the new green economy.
Fairfield County, much like the rest of Connecticut and the entirety
of New England, has a fragile electrical grid. Renewable energy projects
like the Eco-Technology Park will reduce our region's reliance on
electricity generated in other regions, and make the grid more durable
and dependable, especially at those times when our demand for
electricity is greatest. This plan also will benefit the city and region
by changing perceptions and spurring greater economic development in
the state's largest city.
Converting a landfill into a green energy park isn't just a
compelling story; it will also result in millions of dollars in revenue
for the city in exchange for land that only incurs costs. In
Connecticut, where property is king, the tiny 16 square miles of the
Park City could certainly use new taxable land.
We are very much in support of this project and ask those who are not
in favor of this plan to look beyond the issues of aesthetics. This is a
transformative project that is moving Bridgeport forward.
The letter is signed by Timothy Herbst, Trumbull Republican first selectman and chair of the Greater Bridgeport Regional Council (GBRC); Stratford Republican Mayor John Harkins, vice chair; Fairfield Democratic First Selectman Michael Tetreau, GBRC secretary; Bridgeport Democratic Mayor Bill Finch; Easton Republican First Selectman Adam W. Dunsby; Monroe Republican First Selectman Steve Vavrek; and Brian Bidolli, GBRC executive director.